Missing Transactional Emails Always Make You Late to the Party Guest Author September 3, 2013 Guest Post // SUMMARIES ?> We love hearing from happy customers. Dean Gammell, CEO of www.stagit.ie and www.henit.ie is fortunately one of them. Learn about how he turned his email delivery issues upside down when he switched to SendGrid. The following is a guest post from Dean. I used to literally pull my hair out with the problems with had with our email deliverability. That’s not good for a 26 year old CEO battling to maintain his youth. We had email problems coming from two different directions—our suppliers and our customers. When they never got an email with key information it could mean a ruined event for 10-15 people. www.stagit.ie and www.henit.ie are Ireland’s biggest provider of hen and stag parties. We send away over 30,000 people annually to Ireland, the UK, Europe, and America to celebrate their last night of freedom before tying the knot. We pretty much organise what they tried to do in The Hangover film. Our business is only 3.5 years old but we are growing very fast. Last year we grew by 311% and this year we are on route to break that. How We Use Email We built an in-house system to help us manage all our bookings more efficiently. This took us about 1 year to build and we were really happy with the results we were getting out of it initially. That was until we started running into email problems. It was without a doubt the most frustrating period we went through trying to get our emails delivered to our customers and suppliers. We were hitting problems every day and were starting to upset our customers and suppliers. We have two different receivers of our emails—suppliers and our customers. The following is the sort of pain we had to go through when they did not receive our emails. Customer Implications Our key emails were not getting delivered to all of our customers. People were not getting their invites and reminders were not being received. This meant that they were missing their payment dates and people within the group would not know any of the event details. Also, some customers were not receiving their itineraries for their weekend trips. They would call us in a panic looking for these when they should have already been sent by email. Supplier Implications Suppliers were not receiving key information from us, i.e. when we made a payment to them. This would lead to problems on the day of the event when a supplier would refuse to take our group as they would think they had no been paid by us. Suppliers were also not receiving our group size update emails. So if we booked a group of 20 people into a hotel and 3 weeks before the event we would email the hotel to say that only 10 people are going, they were not getting this email. The hotel would then be left with empty rooms, which they would not be happy about! Initially we were trying to fix our email deliverability issues in-house. We tried everything for our servers and got in some email deliverability experts to try and help us. But it ended up being an uphill battle that we could not get the better of. 58% Increase in Delivery I then came across SendGrid through a transactional email I got from another website. I looked into their service and it seemed too good to be true. I researched 2 other email providers after this and my programmer and I looked at them in detail. We chose SendGrid at the end as it had the best features at the best price—which was one of our concerns. What really stood out to us was that SendGrid provided features to report on our email open rates, click rates, and unsubscribe rates. So not only were our emails getting delivered now, but we also had a host of reporting features behind it telling us data down to every last email. No longer could anyone try and blame us for not getting an email because we knew whether they got it or not, that was powerful for us. After we got SendGrid set up through their API it was like flicking a switch. All our emails were now starting to get delivered. Before, we had around a 60% delivery rate…now it’s over 95%. It was a big sigh of relief for us and left us to focus on more important things. What’s even better now is we can see exactly what emails have and have not been delivered to people. What the Future Holds We built an in-house software to manage all our groups. We are now in the process of selling this software to other similar companies through www.thegroupsystem.com and we will be using SendGrid as our email provider without a shadow of a doubt! Many thanks to Dean for sharing his success story with us. If you’re running into similar issues as Dean was and would like to learn more about how SendGrid can help your delivery rate, contact our sales team.